The dollar as a reserve currency: Handle with care

The Economist: Full print edition The dollar as a reserve currency: Handle with care China suggests an end to the dollar era
IN FUTURE, changes to the international financial system are likely to be shaped by Beijing as well as Washington. That is the message of an article by Zhou Xiaochuan, the governor of the People’s Bank of China. Mr Zhou calls for a radical reform of the international monetary system in which the dollar would be replaced as the main reserve currency by a global currency. It is a delicate issue, however. When Tim Geithner, America’s treasury secretary, discussed the proposal in New York on March 25th, his remarks sent the dollar tumbling before he made clear that, naturally, he thought the greenback should remain the dominant reserve currency.
 Mr Zhou’s proposal is China’s way of making clear that it is worried that the Fed’s response to the crisis-printing loads of money-will hurt the dollar and hence the value of China’s huge foreign reserves, of which around two-thirds are in dollars. …


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